Clothing alteration shop owner Cynthia Golden had a steamy response to an attempted robber's demand she hand over her money.
When the female thug reached for a weapon, Golden held up a hot iron and threatened the balaclava-clad woman, who had already made two other robbery attempts in the downtown area Saturday morning.
"She was pulling a weapon out of her pocket when I just flashed the iron right in front of her face and told her, 'Here's the money -- a hot iron,'" said Golden, who owns Caribbean Alterations at 1685 Third Ave. "She saw the steam coming out of the iron and when she saw that she ran. If she would have tried to get the money I would have stomped her with it first."
The incident happened at about 11:30 a.m.
"I thought, why is a girl coming in so early in the morning with a mask on her face, it's not Halloween," said Golden. "I thought it was a prank. But then I saw she was really serious. I just got rattled after that. I'm glad they caught her."
Minutes later, RCMP spotted the suspect running along Quebec Street and after a brief footchase, Cst. Jeff Rantala made the arrest. Police recovered the balaclava and what appeared to be a bracelet on a Quebec Street sidewalk, as well as a gym bag containing clothing and a ball cap.
The crime spree began at 7:21 a.m. when a woman of the same description walked into the Carmel Motor Inn at 1502 Highway 97, produced an edged weapon and robbed the lone desk clerk of about $50 from the till.
"She came in completely covered in a balaclava and asked for the money and left towards the highway on foot," said Hannah Gordy. "She was pretty nice about the whole thing. But it was not fun. I'm the only one here. Thankfully they arrested her."
The Achillion Greek Cuisine restaurant at 422 Dominion St., was next on the robber's list at about 11:19 a.m., but she left without any loot.
"The left eye was cut out [of her balaclava] so I saw one brown eye," said Achillion waitress Cathy Palmer. "She got nothing. She just said, "Gimme your money and I went to the back and told [owner Kosta Illiopulos] and we came back out a minute later and she was gone.
"That's a relief they got her."
RCMP Cpl. Craig Douglass said police confirmed the same suspect was believed to be involved in all three robbery attempts. Her identity will not be released until Monday.